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Rickie Fowler, Matt Kuchar and JB Holmes get Ryder Cup call but Bubba Watson made to sweat

By Phil Casey

Published 13/09/2016

There is currently no place on the US Ryder Cup team for Bubba Watson
There is currently no place on the US Ryder Cup team for Bubba Watson

Rickie Fowler, Matt Kuchar and JB Holmes have been named as United States Ryder Cup captain’s picks by Davis Love.

It means there is currently no place on the team for two-time Masters champion Bubba Watson.

Kuchar and JB Holmes both finished joint fourth at the BMW Championship at Crooked Stick on Sunday but Fowler could only manage 59th, which cost him his spot at Atlanta’s East Lake Golf Club for the season finale, the Tour Championship, and left him sweating over his place.

However, Love put him out of his misery with a phone call to leave Watson, who tied 20th yesterday, the one anxiously waiting with one more pick to come.

“There were questions as late as last night but we kept coming back to these three,” Love said.

“We were really close two weeks ago to this but it took us until last night to finish it off.

“Rickie is so excited to be on the team again. We found no weaknesses in his game.

“He is such a great team-mate and confident on the big stage, he brings a lot of intangibles to our team.

“JB is so steady, easy to pair, has a lot of experience, is consistent and been on a winning Ryder Cup team in the past.

“I’ve been on a lot of teams with Matt and he has a great attitude for match play.

“Like JB he is consistent and easy to pair. These three guys are who we all really wanted.

“We are excited we have 11 players and we can move on.

“This was a tough decision and we have another tough decision coming up in two weeks.”

Fowler was probably the most relieved to hear from Love after flying back to his Florida home disappointed at his performance at the BMW.

However, his fears were allayed even before he had touched down.

“I got a text from Davis asking if I could pop on a phone call and I had to make him wait for a few minutes as we were on a plane but it made the day a lot better after just missing out on East Lake,” said Fowler. “I am probably more excited to be on this team than any other one.”

Kuchar, who has played in the three previous Ryder Cups, was grateful to be selected.

“It is such a thrill to be picked — it stinks to have to be picked as this is my first time (as a captain’s selection),” said the 38-year-old.

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